Canada committed to increase immigration, delays a temporary glitch, says expert – Times of India

NEW DELHI: The Canadian government had announced a record number of new permanent residents at 431,645 under its target for annual immigration level plan for 2022-2024. The target number has further been increased to 451,000 into 2024. While this is good news for Indians, who are the largest number of new permanent residents annually in Canada, long delays in the processing of all categories of Canadian visas including permanent residence, is a cause of worry for many Indians who have been waiting for months after submitting applications.
“Canada has an ageing population and the political discourse as well as regulatory system in the country are supportive of the increased immigration targets. The delays are a hangover of a combination of factors including the pandemic, earlier systemic inefficiencies and the Afghanistan and Ukraine situations, which have seen thousands of applications from people being forced to move to Canada and thus putting the immigration system under pressure,” David Crawford, partner at immigration law firm Fragomen Canada, told TOI.
He added that the Canadian government has a commitment and will to increase permanent resident targets and as better and more efficient technology and processes are deployed and staffing shortages are tackled, the situation will improve. “The Canadian government is recruiting more people for the immigration programmes to move faster and deal with increased volumes of paperwork. More automation of processes is also being undertaken for greater efficiency,” Crawford said.
He feels that the increased target of skilled immigration by the Canadian government will create huge opportunities for Indian nationals looking to move to the country. “The increased target for skilled immigration by Canada will make a big difference for Indian nationals who are the largest number in that category already. In this case, employers too can make a big difference by investing in moving their employees to Canada more efficiently,” Crawford said.
Canada has been increasingly focusing on its provincial nominee programmes through which Canadian provinces have the prerogative to choose immigrant workers who have applied to settle down in their respective provinces. “These programmes are very important because every province has its own labour market needs and by asking them to deliver their own PR programmes, the Canadian government is actually outsourcing its work to them,” Crawford said. He does not see the PNPs undermining the importance of the Canadian government’s Express Entry programme for skilled immigrants in any way.
Crawford also has some advice for Indian students who are planning to go to Canada for their higher education with the goal of finally settling there with permanent residence status. “Opting for a pathway to PR and citizenship through the education route is a crucial decision in life and young students should not gamble with their future. Understanding the pathway that allows Indian students post-study work permit after their post graduation from accredited institutions and permanent residence after working in a high-level job in a field related to education is very important right at the beginning,” he said.
He added that speaking to knowledgeable lawyers to get correct advice on the PR pathway as well at looking at information related to skill shortages on the government website were important.
He further said that it is very important for Indian students and their parents to work with licenced and accredited agents and institutions in Canada and seek accountability from all service providers when planning to study in Canada. “There is often misrepresentation of facts and students should check all colleges and universities and agents before making any decisions. The same is applicable for all potential employers,” Crawford added.

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